Venetian Macau Open Rd 4 - What they said

Sun 20 Oct 2013

Venetian Macau Open Rd 4 - What they said

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Sunday, October 20
Scott Hend (Aus) – Final Round 67 (-4), Total 268 –(16) – Flash Interview
Thursday was a difficult day. Mentally and physically. Then I guess on Friday and Saturday, I started holing putts which I haven’t done the whole year even when I won a couple of weeks ago. I’ve holed my fair share this week.
Ernie is one of the best players in the world. I had my own goals and targets and I achieved my goal which was patient, patient, patient. In the first four holes, I didn’t make any birdie. Ernie started to put some heat on me and all of the sudden, I hit a great shot on the fifth for birdie there. It was all about being patient. I’ve got goals and targets and I’m getting there slowly. We’ll see what happens.
Three wins in a year is definitely the best golf of my career. Who knows what’s going to happen in the next few months of the year. There are some big tournaments coming up and it’ll be nice to perform well in those and be competitive.  The year hasn’t finished yet.
He’s pretty good. I would like to have four majors in my back pocket as well. I’ll have a go. It’s great to match up against those guys and my dream is obviously to get back onto the PGA Tour and this is a step towards it.
Scott Hend celebrates his win with caddie Tony Carolan. Scott Hend celebrates his win with caddie Tony Carolan.
Scott Hend – Winner’s press conference
Scott, well done, Venetian Macau Open Champion, that has a nice ring to it doesn't it.
Yeah, very honoured to be the champion.  Especially when this golf course is pretty tricky.
Your third win of the year.  This must be one of the best years of your career so far?
Yeah, I think my next best one was two wins in Australia on the Von Nida Tour, so this year has been pretty good.  I mean, it's quite hard to try and chase Kiradech Aphibarnrat when he won the Malaysian Open, because he won a pretty prestigious event.  I'm just trying to chip off bits and pieces.  You know, it's important to win again this week, for the third time, it feels good.
What do you attribute your good season to?  You spoke about working hard the past few months, but what is the work you're putting in?
I'm just working hard, mate. I'm not going to tell you exactly what it is because anyone else finds out what I'm doing, I won't be winning (laughing).   So, I'm working really hard on hitting some targets and I'm achieving some goals, and there's a big picture at the end of the tunnel and that's another goal we are trying to achieve. But right now, Tony (Carolan) and I have got our little boxes that we are trying to tick every week, and some weeks it works, some weeks it doesn't.  Luckily for me, it's worked a couple of times this year.
You spoke about Tony a little bit, and he's been on your bag for a while now.  How much of an influence has he been?
It's great, because we are great friends.  When he was out on the Asian Tour here playing, we played a lot of practice rounds together.  We room together a lot.  So I feel pretty honoured for him to actually say yes and come out and caddie for me until he gets his chance to go back to Q School and get his card back, which I have no doubt he'll do because he's such a great player himself.  And on the golf course, it's good, because we sort of play golf a little differently, and the perspective from both sides has sort of helped me to channel my game the way it's been going.
What is your next target?
Well, it's a secret, but I have targets.  I have targets and goals.  Obviously if you want another target, it would be to win again.  That would be a nice target.  You know, once you win, you get the feeling of how good it is to win and you want to keep winning. You're not fortunate enough to win every year and I've been lucky enough to win once last year and then I've won three times this year.  So I'm very fortunate to get that feeling, and it's a nice feeling.
You're working hard not only on your game but also on your physical side?
I'm working physically, mentally and on my game.  I'm working very hard on my game.  You can't work on your game and not work on yourself physically and mentally, because they have all got to be pretty much as strong as each other. And you can't just work on your strong points.  You have to work on your weaknesses. There's a lot to do with it.  And also dietary wise, I'm trying to eat a little bit smarter and drink a little bit smarter.  It's just all little things through life that you try and do to achieve a goal.
I believe that one of your targets this year is to win the Order of Merit.
Well, that's everybody's target during the year.  Right now the guy in front of me, all I can see is his shoelaces.  I can't see anything else, he's so far ahead of me.  I just see his footprints. So it's a long few months coming up.  I'm going to miss a few events here in Asia because I'm going back to play in the Australian PGA and Australian Masters for the first time in however many years, I don't know. But I can just do what I can do, and like I said, the same as today. If he plays better than I do for the rest of the year, then he's going to win the Order of Merit, that's all there is to it.  I can't control what he does.  All I can control is what I do.
Anirban Lahiri Anirban Lahiri
When you won in Chiangmai and Taiwan, you were far behind, and this tournament, you are three shots ahead.
Yeah, I mean, I chased the guys down from behind in Chiangmai and the other week in Taiwan, I led from the front and today I led from the front again.  I'm not a one dimensional player.  I'm not just a guy that can play well on a Sunday and come from behind. I'd like to think that I have the ability to play well enough and shoot a score when I have to, and the last two wins, I've sort of proved to myself and proved to other people that I can lead from the front and hold the lead, which once again is nice to get that feeling.
Must be quite good to do it with Ernie in the group, as well, today?
Like I said, he's one of the great players in the game from the past and also present. And I knew I was going to be up for a hard task, because you have one of the best players in the world trying to come at you in the same group, it was always going to be difficult to try and hold him off. And I had to remain patient; and I remained patient, and he made a few birdies, and I knew he was coming at me, and I just had to wait for my time to come.
How will you celebrate this win?
I won't have a hangover tomorrow, that's for sure.  There's no way I'm going to. I don't like hangovers, so I'll just have a couple of quiet beers with a couple of friends and we'll savour the moment and we'll press on for the CIMB next week.
You have a couple of big weeks coming up.
I am four more weeks in a row and then I have a week off to blow myself out of the water.
You must be feeling good with the form that you're in right now and a couple of wins in the past month and a couple of big events coming up; you must fancy your chances to do well again.
Well, quietly, I'm confident in my game and I've just got to keep approaching it how I am.
Ernie Els Ernie Els
Anirban Lahiri (Ind) – Final Round 62 (-9), Total 271 (-13)
I’m really pleased. I played really good right from the start. Yesterday was a similar story but I ran into some trouble on the back nine. I’m glad I kept my cool and played solid in the end.
I’m chasing it, I’ve come close. I don’t know if I’ve done enough this week but I’m still glad with the way I’ve played the last few days. Didn’t get on to the best starts but I’m glad my golf has improved in the past few weeks.
It’s never a bad time to play well. There are some good events coming up, CIMB Classic next week, the Hero Indian Open and then the ISPS HANDA World Cup of Golf.  It gets better and better. It’ll be great to keep this form going.
I got off to a great start, holed a 30 footer on the first hole. That was awesome, I was expecting that. I changed my driver from yesterday. I’ve had major issues controlling the golf ball but I changed my driver and it gave me confidence having a club that I could control better. Hit it close on two to make eagle and kept hitting it close. Missed a four footer on eight which was a bit silly.
I hit it good all day. The highlight is probably my wedge play. What turned it around was the 13th hole. I just birdied 12. I hit it right off the tee into the hazard. Dropped it and I’m just trying to make five and get out of there without dropping a shot. I hit a great shot and got lucky it went in. I walked up and Arjun (Atwal) said I just saved my tournament right there.
It was awesome playing with Arjun. I looked up to him so much. He’s a great guy to know and play with. Walking down 18, I didn’t know what Scott was on and I knew I just had to make eagle. I was in between clubs and looked over to him and said I might need to do a Wyndham and hit it into the stands like he did (to win) and get it in from there. Then he just said “no no no, you just have to make three, I don’t care how you do it.” It was fantastic having him with me when I played so good.
Yesterday, I was livid, I was so upset with myself having done all the hard work. Having done all the hard work, you get on to the home ward stretch and you have three par fives in the last seven holes and you don’t want to play those in three over par. That was so disappointing.
The run up to CIMB is great. I was contemplating not playing this week as I’ve just come back from a knee injury. I missed two cuts in Taiwan and Japan by a shot or two and I told my caddie that I needed to keep playing and trying to get some rhythm back and get in four days and contend. I’m glad that I came here. I’ve been working hard into tournament rhythm and it’s good it’s starting to happen. I’m glad I made some good decision.
Dad is coming next week to KL which will be nice to have him around. KLGCC, I haven’t done phenomenal well there. I’ve not done well here and Selangor, so it will be good time to change that.
Elmer Salvador (Phi) – Final Round 66 (-5), Total 272 (-12)
I saved many pars and had a good putting day. My driving was a little wild but my irons helped me save a lot of pars. I’m happy that I’ve saved my card for next year. I need to improve on my driving, I just don’t know why.
Feel good to be tied with Ernie. He’s a superstar. I’m just happy with this week.
Ernie Els (Rsa) – Final Round 67 (-4), Total 272 (-12)
It was very frustrating. I started off nicely again and then made a soft bogey on nine. I couldn’t afford any mistakes. I needed to keep the pedal on the metal but I made that mistake and I didn’t play the back nine all that well either. Tough weekend but I think Scott was very strong.
There is always a bit of pressure in the final group. I had four shots to make up and four is a lot to make up especially the caliber of Scott. He played so well and he was strong again. He deserved to win.
I think he can go on from here now. I think that’s what the Asian Tour is all about. You keep seeing really good talent. They get the confidence from the Asian Tour and they can go anywhere. I think they can go to the Web.Com Tour and the PGA Tour.
I had a great time here. I would have loved to play a little better. I had the nice round on the second day. I got to feel good. A bit uncomfortable on the greens. Didn’t hit the ball that great here and there. I’m trying out some new shafts and some new stuff. To be competitive to the end was pleasing.
I actually birdied the sixth as well and was three under. Didn’t make a birdie on seven. I birdie nine which was a very bad thing.
Anirban Lahiri (Ind) – Final Round 62 (-9), Total 271 (-13)
I’m really pleased. I played really good right from the start. Yesterday was a similar story but I ran into some trouble on the back nine. I’m glad I kept my cool and played solid in the end.
I’m chasing it, I’ve come close. I don’t know if I’ve done enough this week but I’m still glad with the way I’ve played the last few days. Didn’t get on to the best starts but I’m glad my golf has improved in the past few weeks.
It’s never a bad time to play well. There are some good events coming up, CIMB Classic next week, the Hero Indian Open and then the ISPS HANDA World Cup of Golf.  It gets better and better. It’ll be great to keep this form going.
I got off to a great start, holed a 30 footer on the first hole. That was awesome, I was expecting that. I changed my driver from yesterday. I’ve had major issues controlling the golf ball but I changed my driver and it gave me confidence having a club that I could control better. Hit it close on two to make eagle and kept hitting it close. Missed a four footer on eight which was a bit silly.
I hit it good all day. The highlight is probably my wedge play. What turned it around was the 13th hole. I just birdied 12. I hit it right off the tee into the hazard. Dropped it and I’m just trying to make five and get out of there without dropping a shot. I hit a great shot and got lucky it went in. I walked up and Arjun (Atwal) said I just saved my tournament right there.
It was awesome playing with Arjun. I looked up to him so much. He’s a great guy to know and play with. Walking down 18, I didn’t know what Scott was on and I knew I just had to make eagle. I was in between clubs and looked over to him and said I might need to do a Wyndham and hit it into the stands like he did and get it in from there. Then he just said “no no no, you just have to make three, I don’t care how you do it.” It was fantastic having him with me when I played so good.
Yesterday, I was livid, I was so upset with myself having done all the hard work. Having done all the hard work, you get on to the home ward stretch and you have three par fives in the last seven holes and you don’t want to play those in three over par. That was so disappointing.
The run up to CIMB is great. I was contemplating not playing this week as I’ve just come back from a knee injury. I missed two cuts in Taiwan and Japan by a shot or two and I told my caddie that I needed to keep playing and trying to get some rhythm back and get in four days and contend. I’m glad that I came here. I’ve been working hard into tournament rhythm and it’s good it’s starting to happen. I’m glad I made some good decision.
Dad is coming next week to KL which will be nice to have him around. KLGCC, I haven’t done phenomenal well there. I’ve not done well here and Selangor, so it will be good time to change that.
Antonio Lascuna (Phi) – Final Round 65 (-6), Total 275 (-9)
My putting today was very good today, it was steady. My mental approach was also good. I had a good caddie too from Macau this week and he helped with reading the putting lines. I just concentrated on my game.
I had a really good front nine, putted in some good birdies. It was very good. Hit it really good. On the back nine, I just concentrated on trying to get three more birdies but only managed par until the last hole which I birdied.
I’m happy to finish on nine under for the tournament. I was focused on finishing in the top-five.
This week, I was 57th on the Order of Merit. I should be safe after this week’s result. I’m happy as I was checking on my ranking back home. Now, I can relax a little bit.
I’m looking forward to the Resort World Manila Masters. It’ll be held on my home course, the Manila Southwoods. With my card safe now, I’ll try to win on my home course. No more pressure as my ranking is safe. I’ll try my hardest.
It’s a good course. I won 21 under at my home course on the local tour, last year, I won 14 under. I know which lines to drive the ball, know the distances and the greens. I will have confidence playing there.